UTC+8 ( BJT)

Infograph: China rebar output at 8-m low, price volatile

China’s rebar output has returned to the normal track since the start of December, with the output from the 137 Chinese steel producers under Mysteel’s weekly survey posting declines on week, as some of them have either trimmed the production or halted the rolling lines for maintenance, while others have reallocated their crude steel to flat steel products such as hot-rolled coil (HRC) for higher margins.

Over December 17-23, the output from these mills including both the integrated mills and re-rollers fell for the fourth straight week to an eight-month low of 3.47 million tonnes, or down 3.7% on month, as demand has been curtailed by the cold winter in China, which is usually the case.

Against the normal trend, though, China’s national price of the HRB 400 20mm dia rebar, for example, has experienced great volatility in tandem with higher HRC prices and other steelmaking raw material prices with iron ore in particular.

As of December 29, the prices eased for the fifth working day to Yuan 4,369/tonne ($669/t) including the 13% VAT, or down Yuan 210/t from December 22 when the price surprisingly shot up to a 25-month high, and even though the price as of Tuesday was still Yuan 270/t higher than the end of November.